Saturday, April 21, 2012

Young Justice 1.26 - Auld Acquaintance



Young Justice 1.26 - Auld Acquaintance

Brief Summary

The team discovers discovers shocking revelations about Red Arrow, Cadmus, and the plan to control the Justice League.

What I Liked

It was cool to see all the pieces from this season come together, and the showdown at the Watchtower was pretty cool.

The kisses at New Year's were cute.

Superboy's smile at finally getting Superman's approval.

Superboy and Robin teaming up.

What I Didn't Like

I'm not terribly thrilled that Red Arrow ended up being a clone. Even though the Roy everyone knew was the clone the entire time, so it's not like it changes the character for anyone, it means that there's another "real" Roy Harper out there.

Twists and Turns

Probably the biggest being that for the past three years, the Roy Harper everyone knew was a Cadmus clone. Roy was programed by Cadmus to leak information and was given orders through a certain code.

6 members of the Justice League went missing for 16 hours during the time they were under control, and there's no telling what they did during that time.

Observations

I like that Aqualad and Red Arrow were such close friends that Aqualad even told him about his heartbreak with Tula.

The New Year's kisses were cute, if somewhat unexpected. Megan and Conner were obvious, as was Artemis/KF. Zatanna pulled Robin in, and the new girl Rocket paired off with Aqualad.

The real Roy Harper is in Cadmus' control, and it looks like he's missing part of his right arm. Interesting, since I think Roy ends up losing an arm in the comics, and ends up with a prosthetic.

Is Guardian, Roy's uncle, in on the bad stuff Cadmus is doing? He must be. That would also explain how the real Roy was abducted and replaced without Green Arrow noticing. (Because that would be ridiculous otherwise!)

Robin pulled out the escrima sticks during his fight with Batman, Nightwing's signature weapons.

From the preview for next week, I spotted Blue Beetle, Cassie/Wondergirl, and someone who looked a bit like Robin, but with a different uniform and shorter hair.

Overall

I'm not sure how I feel about Red Arrow having been a clone. In reality, it doesn't matter, since the Red Arrow we knew on the show the whole time was the clone, and if Superboy is any indication, being a clone isn't inherently a bad thing. But I'm curious about the real Roy. The first season finale provided some closure on story arcs from this season, and left the door open for some new stories for S2, though, so overall it was a pretty good conclusion.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Young Justice 1.25 - Usual Suspects



Young Justice 1.25 - Usual Suspects

Brief Summary

Five new members, including Red Arrow, are brought onto the Justice League. Meanwhile, with the help of a new team member Rocket, the team goes to confront Cheshire, and retrieve a mysterious briefcase she has in her possession.

What I Liked

Pretty much the whole team was present, save for Red Arrow, who had joined the Justice League, for this mission. I didn't really care for the last-minute introduction of Rocket, as I found her character to be somewhat annoying, but it wasn't really a big deal.

Superboy, Miss Martian, and Artemis all came clean about their secrets. This is only done after we see a scene where it looks like all three are joined up with the villains, so I was relieved that they weren't being stupid and had actually trusted the others. Robin already knew Artemis' secret, but it seems Superboy's Lex Luthor connection and Miss Martian's connection to Queen Bee were both pretty well-kept. (Although with Superboy slapping those patches on like no tomorrow in the last episode, I'm surprised no one noticed back then.)

What I Didn't Like

As mentioned above, I didn't really like Rocket, and I'm a little confused why she was thrown onto the team in the penultimate episode of the season. Also, the whole episode felt a little weird in the beginning. I was wondering if maybe I'd missed an episode or something, since Rocket isn't very well introduced.

I briefly mentioned the possibility of Roy being the mole on my review of Insecurity, and I essentially ruled it out because it wouldn't make sense. However, as it turns out, Roy was the mole. The only saving grace for me is that he seems to have been brainwashed, as he looks stunned when he realizes he's been the mole without even knowing it. This makes more sense of his actions in the previous episode, suddenly lifting suspicion on everyone else and declaring there is no mole. But one has to wonder when he was brainwashed to become the mole. We first learn about it in Targets, but I can't remember if it had been mentioned/a plot for an episode before that. I'm kind of annoyed that he turned out to be the mole, but since it's not like he was doing it on purpose, and it does make sense story-wise, I won't be too irritated by it!

Twists and Turns

Red Arrow was unknowingly the mole. He implants a chip into Batman, and Vandal Savage comes aboard the Watchtower. The whole league looks to be under control.

Observations

Roy seems to be aware of his actions now, and may possibly be the only one on the Watchtower not under control of those chips. I can only assume he'll try to contact the Young Justice team for help.

Somewhat of a spoiler, but I remember way back before the show even started that it was mentioned not everyone would survive. Arguably, Zatara has sort-of been a victim, although he is still alive. I could very well see someone dying in the finale, and Red Arrow looks like a prime target. He's not been a prominent team member for much of the season, and even though he didn't mean to be, since he was the mole, it would make sense that he'd be willing to do something extreme to redeem himself and save the others. I'm crossing my fingers he doesn't get killed off, though.

Overall

A good episode, with a little bit of a rough start. I'm not a huge fan of just jumping in and explaining along the way. I liked that Miss Martian, Superboy, and Artemis' stories all found a little bit of conclusion in their admitting their secrets. And while I'm not thrilled about Roy having been the mole, it's a nice twist and it mostly makes sense. I'm anxious to see how they're going to tie all this up.

Young Justice 1.24 - Performance



Young Justice 1.24 - Performance

Brief Summary

Robin and the team go undercover at Haley's Circus to try to determine the cause of some mysterious thefts that have been happening in towns where the circus has been. Red Arrow continues to distrust Artemis, Superboy, and Miss Martian.

What I Liked

Robin's reactions to revisiting his home circus, the circus owner recognizing him at the end, and Robin's conversation with Kid Flash were all highlights. The episode didn't do a flashback to Robin's past or anything, which I feel like they could have made more of, but the reactions from Robin were nicely done, especially his insisting that the team keep an open mind about the circus leader's involvement.

It was nice to give the human characters a little more chance to shine, and without the use of Megan's telepathy, they actually had to use radios to communicate. They rely on her telepathy so much sometimes.

What I Didn't Like

Why in the world did Red Arrow just suddenly trust everyone? Superboy had been particularly weird this episode, slapping on one after another of those shields. I feel like he should have stayed suspicious.

Twists and Turns

It was a shapeshifter/power-stealer that was behind all the thefts.

Observations

Superboy was really using those shield's from Luthor to the max. Did he do like 3 or 4 in this episode alone? It's kind of like a drug or something, and he's keeping it from everyone else.

Aqualad and Zatanna were not in the episode. Kid Flash briefly appeared when he called Robin, and Robin explained he didn't want KF around since he knows about Robin's past connection to the circus, and didn't want him to question his objectivity in the case.

Overall

A good episode, but not my favorite. I wish they had made a little more use of Robin's past in terms of the overall episode, and also I don't understand why Red Arrow did a total 180 on his justifiable suspicion of the others.

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Young Justice 1.23 - Insecurity



Young Justice 1.23 - Insecurity

Brief Summary

Green Arrow persuades Roy to join up to the Young Justice team, thinking it would be a good example, and make him look better for joining up to the Justice League. However, Artemis is upset that now there are two archers on the team, and because her mother reveals that she was initially added to the team partially to keep her out of trouble. When the team heads off on a mission to track down Sportsmaster, Artemis goes off-book trying to prove her worth.

What I Liked

Well for starters, Red Arrow finally joined the team! He's definitely my favorite second to Robin, so this makes me happy, for sure. And while he's still not the most chipper member, he's a team player and the others respect him. Interestingly, it almost seemed like he was playing the leader on the mission, even though technically that's Aqualad's role.

I also liked that Green Arrow is still looking out for him, and that the two seem on good terms.

Wally trying to cheer Artemis up. He did a good job, too. It's nice to see Wally's softer side, when he's not just tossing one-liners and being the comic relief.

Cheshire's interactions with Red Arrow amuse me. I know in the comics the two had a thing, so I get that it's probably in reference to that, but her advances on him (purely theatrical or otherwise) have him so bewildered, it's fun to watch, especially when Artemis actually questions whether or not they're dating, and he quickly denies.

What I Didn't Like

Artemis is definitely not a favorite character of mine, but she's just so stupid sometimes! Why was she trying to complete the mission on her own? Following the rest of the team seemed like a much better idea. And that said, why didn't she just reveal to the team about her family ties in the beginning? Or before this mission? It's not like she's the only one who has "family" baggage. (Superboy is a half-Lex Luthor clone! Not that he's telling anyone, of course...) Yes, it might put her at risk of being distrusted for a little while, but when this news comes out now, after she's mislead the team so she could try to bag the bad guys on her own, she's going to look even worse. It's hard to feel sorry for her, because it's really all her fault. Why she doesn't actually lean on the team a bit is beyond me. There's nothing wrong with being the newbie and getting some help.

Twists and Turns

I feel like we already essentially knew this, but Cheshire is Artemis' sister, and Sportsmaster is Artemis' father.

Artemis misled the team so she could take on Cheshire and Sportsmaster herself. The plan failed anyway, since Red Arrow was trailing her.

Observations

Red Arrow doesn't trust Artemis, and with good reason. However, I doubt she's the mole. She's being confronted by her villainous family, but not giving them info. Frankly, I think Superboy is the mole without evening knowing it. (He has a psychic link with Lex, who can shut him down with just two words, after all.)

Zatanna, Megan, and Conner are becoming a bit of a trio, since all three live at the headquarters. Their side story about finding out what Red Tornado's apartment was like was a little silly, but it's nice that they're kind of bonding. You'd think Zatanna might feel like a third wheel sometimes, though, since Megan and Conner are dating. (Come to think of it, creatively that might be why they got another team member to live there, so it wasn't just the two of them living in the same place with only Red Tornado around.)

Robin was MIA, working on a case with Batman. I think he's missed the most episodes out of any of the team members, excluding ones who weren't there from the start.

It was kind of sad that Wally had started really bonding with Artemis, and then totally shut her down after learning that she misled them all. Also, I didn't even recognize him at first in that new costume! It wasn't until the next scene that I realized it was just him, and not some random other hero who had stepped in.

Artemis looked over as Cheshire was (forcibly) kissing Red Arrow. Does she actually think something is going on between the two, or was that cleared up? Might have to re-watch to see if it's clarified. If she does think there's something going on, I could see her being quick to point the finger at him for being the mole. I think we can pretty much rule out Arrow, Robin, Kid Flash, and Aqualad, though. (I don't think they can twist it any way to have Roy have been the mole and have it make sense, but if they do somehow go that route, I'm going to be pissed.)

Overall

A really good episode! Artemis continues to annoy me with her stupid decisions, but I'm definitely thrilled to have Red Arrow on the team.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Community 3.12 - Contemporary Impressionists



Community 3.12 - Contemporary Impressionists


Brief Summary

Abed has amassed a huge debt from a celebrity impersonation company, and the study group agree to work for the company as impersonators at a Bar Mitzvah in order to pay it off. Meanwhile, Jeff is taking anti-anxiety medication, but it's causing his narcissism to blow through the roof.

What I Liked

Everyone dressed up as the impersonators. I loved the comment about Britta and Troy being able to both play Michael Jackson.

The dean falling over and spazzing at Jeff's sunglasses look.

Britta as Michael Jackson.

And again, the difference between "not liking a plot" vs. "not liking how it was executed, Troy and Abed's scene at the end was very sad, especially because it's not clear that everything is okay between them. Abed wanted to go play in the Dreamatorium alone, and didn't do their special handshake. Troy seemed frustrated trying to talk sense into him.

Evil!Abed showing up in the imaginary plane.

Pierce getting excited over being recognized as "fat" Burt Reynolds.

What I Didn't Liked

Chang's storyline with his army wasn't great, and I don't really care for some of the cartoony add-ins, such as the thought bubbles. I didn't mind the Ego apple as much, but it still was a little jarring.

Twists and Turns

Evil!Abed can't be anything but trouble.

Jeff kissed Shirley when he was up on the stage and flipping out!

Chang seems to be enlisting kids to his "army" to overthrow the dean.

Observations

I saw some people complaining about Britta's advice to Jeff about not taking the pills anymore, saying that she shouldn't be more qualified to make decisions than Jeff's therapist. While I'm not sure the show was really even thinking that deeply, what I got from it was that they were trying to say that there is no magic pill that will cure all your problems when you take it. They took it to a comical extreme by having the pill work too well, but the same principle applies, I think. There is no "quick fix" for problems, and Jeff's willingness to just keep popping pills wasn't good.

I'm hoping the tension between Troy and Abed will resolve itself shortly. I like those two too much as friends, and it was heartbreaking seeing them in a bit of a tiff.

Overall

A solid episode. Not my favorite, again, but still pretty fun.

The Vampire Diaries 3.17 - Break on Through



The Vampire Diaries 3.17 - Break on Through


The Vampire Diaries 3.17 - Break on Through

Brief Summary

Damon and Sage work together to try to determine what it is Rebekah is after. Caroline tries to help Bonnie's mother as she adjusts to becoming a vampire. Meredith tries to determine what is causing Alaric to attack and kill people.

What I Liked

The revelation that the white oak tree Rebekah is looking for was used in the building of the Wickery Bridge is fun, because it connects everything so much. I also love the reveal at the end with Damon and the sign.

What I Didn't Like

Bonnie's storyline was so dull I just about tuned out. I don't care about her mom that much, and while I love Caroline, the whole storyline about trying to get her to adjust to becoming a vampire was just so boring and predictable: Abbey leaves at the end of the episode, despite Caroline's plees for her to stay.

It's nice Alaric has a storyline, but I'm still iffy on his being a murderer thing. It's infinitely more interesting than another Klaus story, though.

Twists and Turns

The Wickery Bridge is made of the white oak tree.

Rebekah burns down the bridge.

Sage double-crosses Damon, since he neglected to mention that killing Rebekah would also kill Finn, who Sage is in love with.

Damon retrieves the sign for the bridge, which is made of the same material as the bridge itself.

Alaric attacks Meredith.

Bonnie uses her powers to try to reverse the damage from the ring.

Observations

Why didn't Elena come up with some excuse for why Jeremy should not wear the ring anymore? He's clearly wearing it while he's on the phone with her.

Has Bonnie actually succeeded in helping cure Alaric? Or is the damage irreversible?

Alaric explains the fights he was in, but there's no mention of the restraining order that Isabelle supposedly filed against him in college (twice). That bit didn't even make sense to me, though, I don't know why Meredith would make it up.

Overall

A solid episode, though Bonnie's story dragged.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Young Justice 1.22 - Agendas



Young Justice 1.22 - Agendas

Brief Summary

Superboy gets a mental message to go back to Cadmus, where he discovers they've created another Superboy clone. He learns some disturbing information about both the new clone, and his own creation. Meanwhile, the Justice League debate on who to add to the Justice League team, and whether Captain Marvel should be allowed to stay now that they know he's a 10-year old kid. Megan and Zatanna make Thanksgiving dinner.

What I Liked

Batman knows everything - he already knew that Captain Marvel was only 10.

Green Arrow rallying to get Red Arrow added to the Justice League.

Both Green Lanterns adamantly objecting to adding another Green Lantern to the league!

Wonder Woman insisting that they need more women, and Black Canary and Hawkgirl agreeing.

Getting to know some more about Superboy's origins.

What I Didn't Like

Nothing! Except that who actually got voted into the league was left as a cliffhanger.

Twists and Turns

There is a second Superboy clone, Project Match, which is pure Kryptonion, whereas Superboy himself is part human.

The human DNA in Superboy comes from Lex Luthor.

Guardian is Roy/Red Arrow's uncle.

Batman already knew Captain Marvel was only 10, but didn't bother telling the rest of the league.

A new member is voted to join the Justice League.

Observations

I wonder if the fact that Guardian is Roy's uncle is supposed to cast suspicion on Red Arrow now. Guardian himself doesn't seem like a bad guy, though. (Fun fact: the two have the same voice actor. Same with Superman and Superboy!)

I remembered that in the comics, Superboy was created from DNA from both Superman and Lex Luthor. I'm glad they brought that in! That's an interesting little fact. Somehow I feel like that little tidbit could possibly put an even bigger wedge between Superman and Superboy, though.

Who was added to the league? The person most-discussed was Red Arrow, and it does make sense. I'd be happy to see him around more often, that's for sure! I'm not sure Roy really wants to join the Justice League, though.

I'm glad Batman stuck up for Captain Marvel. Black Canary was a bit condescending when she was asking him to leave.

Overall

Another good episode! I'm really curious to see who got added to the League.

Monday, March 19, 2012

How I Met Your Mother 7.19 - The Broath



How I Met Your Mother 7.19 - The Broath

Brief Summary

Barney makes Ted promise not to tell the others that Quinn is a stripper, which Ted promptly turns around and does. The gang then get to meet Quinn, and are not happy to see she is bossing Barney around and generally being a controlling jerk. When they plot an intervention, however, Quinn walks in on it and breaks up with Barney for feeling the need to hide her profession.

What I Liked

Ted living in the dorms should have been explored more, but I think the concept is funny.

Ted running into the bar right after promising Barney he wouldn't tell and blurting it out to everyone else.

The term "Quinntervention," and Marshall's continued use of wanting to put "Quinn" in front of words like "interest."

Robin and Ted's chat about wanting to go back to normal.

Lily getting a little too into her kiss with Robin.

What I Didn't Like

That the episode was essentially a long joke at everyone's expense, played by Barney and Quinn. 90% of what we saw was them acting.

The fight with Quinn, fake or not, was super awkward and weird.

That Quinn is very eager is to use Barney's friends for her own amusement. Making them kiss each other, and having Ted and Robin fight over her apartment were her ideas.

That just because Barney and Quinn knew how they'd react and played it against them suddenly made all of the gang's concerns invalid.

That we still aren't seeing any emotions on Robin's end regarding Barney, not even friendship. She's concerned over her loss of Ted as a friend, but doesn't bat an eye about Barney, who she was supposedly in love with.

Marshall's sex stories. Not cool, especially because what can Lily do about it? Once it's out there, it's out there...

Barney referring to himself as the devil. That's just odd.

Twists and Turns

It looks like Quinn is a total bitch, but it's actually just that she and Barney pull a long play on the rest of the gang.

Quinn and Barney decide to move in together.

Robin gets a promotion and a new apartment.

Ted is moving into Quinn's apartment.

Observations

I feel like the only reason we're not seeing Robin's reactions to all this is that we're going to get an "Of Course"-style flashback toward the end of the season. We'll suddenly see, "Oh, Robin really was in love with him the whole time!" and it'll be a big shock to everyone. At this point, they're so far downplaying the history between Barney and Robin it's nonexistent.

I don't feel like Barney's very sincere when he's around Quinn, especially in the fake scenes. I know they were meant to be fake, but still. Also, why the big play on the gang anyway? Just to mess with them? Seems like Quinn is all sorts of a bad influence on Barney.

I also still think Quinn is pulling one over on Barney. Moving in anyway, and subtly hinting that she'd quit her stripping job if she got married? Something's going on here.

Overall

Not that funny, and since most of what we saw between Quinn and Barney was an act, we still don't know much about her other than that she likes creating chaos. Objectively, she's sassy and clever, and she and Barney definitely have some common ground. But it's pushed way too fast. Also, why are we only told about Robin's achievements and not shown? That would have made a better subplot than Marshall and Lily's sex stories.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Young Justice 1.21 - Image



Young Justice 1.21 - Image

Brief Summary

Robin is appointed leader for a mission that takes the group to Qurac, trying to determine why Queen Bee has the president of a neighboring nation agreeing to combine into one country. While en route, the group meets up with an 8-year old Garfield Logan and his mother, who used to star in a TV show "Hello Megan!"

What I Liked

The opening with Black Canary and Green Arrow was amusing. He was outraged when he thought she'd been kissing Superboy, but then found the whole thing funny when it turned out to just be Miss Martian shape-shifting. Canary was less-than-pleased.

Learning more about Miss Martian. She has a very interesting backstory, and it's nice to finally understand where her sometimes annoying catch-phrase comes from.

Robin acting as leader. It's nice to get a glimpse of what he's like when he's in leader-mode, and interestingly, he's a little less chipper about it than you would have thought.

I had a heads-up from a friend that Gar, better known as Beast Boy, was going to be making an appearance in the episode, and it was fun. I hope he'll return in future episodes, especially considering this one ended on a bit of a cliffhanger.

What I Disliked

Nothing! It was another really good episode.

Twists and Turns

Miss Martian isn't a green martian as she has led everyone to believe, but a white martian.

Queen Bee knows her secret and is presumably going to blackmail her.

Gar's eye colored had changed to green by the end of the episode. Shades of things to come?

Observations

As noted above, I wonder if Miss Martian giving Gar her blood will trigger his change into the shape-shifting Beast Boy? I'm not sure where the green in his eyes is coming from, though, since Miss Martian isn't really a green martian. It could be because she was shifting herself to appear as one, though. At any rate, that's an interesting (presumably new) back-story for the character.

This was a really interesting episode. I liked learning more about Miss Martian, and you really got a sense of the loneliness she felt and how she clung to the "Hello Megan!" show as she was growing up. You can also see why she's so thrilled with such mundane things as going to school, baking, and being on the cheerleading squad. Interesting in that she was actually the one who suggested "Conner" for a name when Superboy was thinking of one, saying how she'd always liked it, when it turns out Conner was the name of Megan's boyfriend in the show. She's living out her fantasy dream of being her favorite TV character, and I can understand why she continues to lie out of fear that she'll lose everyone close to her if she reveals her true identity. Unfortunately, the truth is probably going to come out sooner or later, and it would be much better coming from her than from someone else.

Kid Flash was dropping some major hints that he knows Bruce Wayne and Batman are the same person, and you can see Robin trying to shut him up. Looks like Robin has spilled the beans on his secret identity to his buddy.

Robin is a very serious leader. No word plays or jokes from him on this mission. I wonder if it's because he's trying his best not to screw up, or if he really isn't happy playing that part anymore. He wanted to be the leader early in the season, but after the whole Failsafe scenario, he realized that he didn't want to become a Batman-like person who had to send friends to their doom in order to accomplish a mission.

The ending was a bit of a cliffhanger, which was unusual. What has Queen Bee done to Gar? What does she want Megan to do for her in order to keep the secret that she is a white martian?

Artemis, Aqualad, and Zatanna were all MIA for this mission. Aqualad was working with Aquaman, but no reason was given for why the two girls weren't joining.

Overall

Another really solid episode! I'm enjoying learning more about the characters so much. I liked Kid Flash more after last week's episode, and Miss Martian has grown on me a bit more after this week's.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Community 3.11 - Urban Matrimony and the Sandwich Arts



Community 3.11 - Urban Matrimony and the Sandwich Arts


Brief Summary

Shirley and Andre are planning to get remarried, and in the study room, no less! Britta takes on the role of planning the wedding so Shirley can focus on her sandwich shop venture with Pierce, but she becomes depressed at how good she is at traditional female roles. Jeff is also frustrated trying to come up with a good wedding toast when he himself does not believe in marriage. Meanwhile, Troy and Abed try to make themselves "normal" for the wedding.

What I Liked

First off, that Community is back!

I liked all the character interactions. "Normal" Troy and Abed were hilarious. And the fact that Andre thought they were being sarcastic.

Jeff's heart was full of a lot of things, including a lot of pictures of Annie. Hm...

Britta moping about being good at womanly things, especially her line about coming from a "long line of mothers and wives!" was amusing.

Annie's giant wedding book.

Britta and Jeff going at it while "almost" getting married.

I kind of liked Pierce's poster design for Shirley's Sandwiches, even though she woman looked nothing like her, haha.

What I Didn't Like

It's hard to say what I didn't like. It was all very good. It wasn't the funniest or even most fun episode by a longshot, but it's great that the show is back!

Twists and Turns

Andre and Shirley get married again.

We see Annie's Boobs (the monkey!) is still alive.

Dean Pelton sold the space to a Subway shop instead of Shirley's sandwich shop.

Observations

I am curious about the prominence of Annie in Jeff's heart. I really like the idea of something forming between the two of them, but the episode also had the Britta and Jeff bonding over their mutual dislike of marriage, so who knows!

Overall

Glad to have the show back! I'm looking forward to some great episodes ahead, and this was a pretty solid start.

The Vampire Diaries 3.16 - 1912



The Vampire Diaries 3.16 - 1912


Brief Summary

Rebekah is trying to find the location of the white oak tree, without much luck. She hangs around Stefan and Damon trying to get answers, but the brothers are talking about the murders and how they could be connected to a vampire they knew back in the day, Sage. Meanwhile, Alaric has been arrested on suspicion of being the murderer after Meredith shoots him, and Elena and Matt try to find information that will prove his innocence.

What I Liked

First off, I know I have about 4 episodes worth of back-entries to write. I'll try to get them up! I did love Elijah showing back up again, and I was a little sad he's already left town again.

Elena and Matt. They're cute together, and I like thinking of the two of them as ending up together in the future.

Damon. Even when he's back to being the "badder" brother, he's really not that bad. Damon wasn't trying to kill people in the past sequences we saw, and he wasn't trying to kill anyone that night, either. He's trying to help Stefan learn to drink in moderation.

What I Didn't Like

I don't mind them bringing Alaric into the fold more, but I don't like the realization that he could sudddenly be the murderer because the ring is making him crazy. Ring making him crazy could be a good plot, and tie in well with what we know of Jonathon Gilbert. But murderer?

Twists and Turns

Obviously the big one that Alaric might be committing the murders.

Samantha Gilbert was the murderer in the past, not Sage.

Observations

Meredith asked to be let in, and she always seems to have vampire blood around to heal people. I'm thinking she might be a vampire herself. I'll go one step further and guess that she might actually be Samantha Gilbert, the vampire from the past. Damon thought she was dead, but clearly she wasn't if she was the murderer. So she must have become a vampire. And that would explain why Meredith had the Samantha Gilbert journal. Even if she turns out not to be Samantha Gilbert herself, I'm thinking odds are Meredith knew her in the past and is indeed a vampire.

Overall

A good episode, but I'm not sure I like the Alaric plotline.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Young Justice 1.20 - Coldhearted



Young Justice 1.20 - Coldhearted

Brief Summary

It's Wally's 16th birthday, and he's thrilled when it seems he's finally going to get to join in on a Justice League mission. He's less-than-thrilled when it turns out he's the only one on the team who has been assigned a separate mission: delivering a heart across the country in 4 hours for a young girl who needs a transplant. Along the way, he runs into some trouble from people who want to stop him from reaching his destination on-time.

What I Liked

First off, remember how last entry I was talking about how I wanted to see more of the character's lives? Well, I think this episode definitely did that! I liked seeing some of Wally's non-Kid Flash life, and even though most of the other characters didn't feature prominently, it was a great episode for getting to know him a little better. He was frustrating me to death when he stopped to fight Vandal Savage, and I was relieved when it turned out the young girl hadn't actually died. (I thought that was kind of sad and strange.)

I also liked everyone's "snow" versions of their costumes.

What I Didn't Like

I really liked this episode! So no complaints, even though it was mostly just about Wally.

Twists and Turns

Wally had the news falsely report that the queen had died in order to get Count Vertigo to confess to his plan.

Observations

I'm glad someone finally told Wally that Megan was dating Conner. It was so painfully obvious. Artemis seemed to relish getting to tell him, and her annoyed look in the beginning when he's flirting with Megan seems to indicate to me she might like him a bit.

Overall

A really good episode. My sister, who has missed quite a few of the recent episodes, was also watching with me, and she seemed to equally enjoy it as well. A really solid story, and I liked getting to focus a bit more on Wally as a character. Hopefully we'll have similar episodes for the other characters coming up.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Little Scarf Reviews Community!



That's right! Little Scarf Girl will now be reviewing Community starting when it returns next week, March 15th, at 8PM on NBC. Again, for the others, I won't be doing any "back-reviewing" of former episodes aired, but I will tell a bit about my stance for the show.

I only recently caught up on the show back in October, but its quirky humor and fun characters quickly grew on me. The first episode I watched was Remedial Chaos Theory, which is actually somewhat confusing, but it definitely got me hooked on the show's zany humor. It's a show that never takes itself too seriously, but yet still manages to be heartfelt at times. While there is romance, it never takes over, instead playing under the surface or in the background. While I like interactions between Jeff and Annie, Community itself isn't a show that really is made to explore relationships, so I'm happy to just watch for the little moments. Troy and Abed's friendship is another huge fun part of the show, and I'm excited to see what antics they continue to get up to when the show comes back. My favorite characters are Jeff, Annie, and Abed, though the only characters I really don't care for are Britta, Pierce, and Chang. (And even they're not so bad.)

The Big Bang Theory - Episdoes 7.11 - 7.18



The Big Bang Theory - Episdoes 7.11 - 7.18


Brief Summary

It's difficult to feel motivated to review this show since I feel like nothing really ever happens. The only real plotline we have right now is Bernadette and Howard's wedding, and the big question surrounding it - where will they live after getting married - hasn't been answered, even though it's been a plotpoint in I think two different episodes already. There's no denying funny things happen, but it's not the same as HIMYM or even Community, where things actually happen. So in short, I'm going to do a mass review of the past 8 episodes!

What I Liked

Amy's reaction to Sheldon buying her a tiara in The Shiny Trinket Manuever was cute. I also liked Bernadette and Howard's magic show.

The Recombination Hypothesis is the closest to moving the plot forward this show really gets, and while it was interesting, essentially that whole scenario that played out over the episode never really happened. Penny and Leonard sort-of dating again is good, though. I feel like they're "sort-of dating" all the time, anyway.

The best part of The Beta Test Initiation was Sheldon and Amy doing the podcast about Fun With Flags.

Leonard trying to avoid saying that Penny beat him in chess was great in The Werewolf Transformation.

What I Didn't Like

The aforementioned "nothing ever happens on this show" is my big stickler. But there's also just a lot of not-funny stuff going on.

Amy's kookiness is endearing up to a point, but the whole thing about her giving Penny a giant painting of the two of them in The Rothman Disintegration was a little ridiculous. The other plot from that episode, Sheldon wanting the office of the retiring professor, felt stale.

The Vacation Solution could have been really funny, with Sheldon being a general pain while trying to work with Amy in her lab, but nothing really stood out for me. Also, the subplot of Howard not wanting to sign a prenup was kind of dumb. Similarly, The Friendship Contraction just sort of fell flat overall, with Sheldon being a pain to Leonard, again, and Howard wanting a cool nickname from his fellow astronauts.

Twists and Turns

The only twists in the last 8 episodes have been that Penny and Leonard start dating again, and Howard finds out Bernadette doesn't really like kids.

Observations

I know a lot of shows (especially sitcoms) don't really have a set "goal" of where they're going. But I feel like the best shows usually have enough plotlines or character development or hanging threads to keep you engaged anyway. If nothing really happens, why should you care about the characters? You want to see them grow and change and adapt to the various things that life throws at them. HIMYM is an easy one to point out the plots and threads, since there actually is a goal in mind for the show. Community also has the goal of seeing its characters through their four years of college. But even shows like Parks and Rec, which really doesn't have a "goal," has plotlines such as Leslie's campaign, the funding being cut to the department, and subplots such as Tom's attempts to start a business, to keep you invested in what's going on. Similarly Frasier had slight changes to the lives of its characters over the years, and ongoing subplots throughout the episodes and seasons that kept things interesting. Not all shows have to have tight continuity and reoccuring themes, of course, but I feel like those things make them better and more relatable.

Overall

As I said, The Big Bang Theory is a fun laugh for a minute at times. But somwhen it's not funny, you're left watching a show with characters that never progress or change, and will probably be doing the same things 2 or 3 seasons from now. Granted that might be part of its draw, so in that regard, it might be succeeding. It's certainly is a big ratings hit.

Young Justice 1.19 - Misplaced



Young Justice 1.19 - Misplaced


Brief Summary

Klarion the witch boy is back, and he's casting a spell with some other sorcerers that make all the adults in the world suddenly vanish. At the same time in another realtiy, however, all the children have vanished, leaving the Justice League stumped. The Young Justice team must coordinate with Billy Batson/Captain Marvel, who is able to transfer between the two worlds due to his unique abilities, and the Justice League, to figure out how to bring down the sorcerers.

What I Liked

And the show is finally back! I feel like we haven't had new episodes in ages. I enjoyed the story, and I really liked getting a know a little bit more about Billy/Captain Marvel. He's just sort of the comic relief sometimes, it was nice to see him be helpful.

I'm a little indifferent to Zatanna officially joining the team, but it was heading in that direction, and it's nice to have another girl on the team. I would have honestly prefered they introduce Wonder Girl instead, though.

What I Didn't Like

Even though this is only the second time they've resorted to using the Dr. Fate helmet, I feel like we've seen it too much. (It was what won them the battle in Revalation, too.) The effects were permanent this time, though. I thought Zatara was interesting, so it's a little sad to see him taken over. I hope they can rescue him at some point, although Dr. Fate seemed pretty intent on staying.

Maybe I missed something, but what were the witches/sorcerers trying to accomplish by splitting the worlds?

Twists and Turns

Zatanna uses the Dr. Fate helmet to win the battle, and Zatara makes a deal with Dr. Fate so he will be the host instead of his daughter.

Zatana joins the team and moves into the tower.

Observations

I think Robin has a soft spot for Zatanna. He was sort of flirting with her back in Humanity, and he tosses a look back at her at the end of this episode when she asks to be alone. I could see the two of them bonding a bit, especially considering Robin's parents are dead. (Even though Zatara is not dead, he's pretty much unaccessible right now.)

Nice continuity in that I believe Wally's still got his arm in a cast from Revalation. The timestamps on the episodes indicate only one month has passed between the episodes, so it's cool that they're paying attention to things like that. I also like that they mentioned Red Arrow when they were trying to find people to help. It's nice that the show doesn't just forget that people exist, even when they don't show up in every episode. Also, we saw another glimpse of Barbara Gordon in Gotham City. As a fan of Batgirl, I'd love to see more of her.

Personally, I'd like to see less entire-world disaster scenarios on the show (the team is supposed to be covert-ops missions!) and focus a little more on the lives of our heroes. I can't help but compare the show to X-men: Evolution a little bit, since they both focused on groups of younger super heroes. (Although admittedly the X-men team comprised of slightly older teens and were treated more like adults to begin with.) X-men also showed a lot of the character's personal lives, which I enjoyed. More little glimpses like we saw in Downtime and Homefront would be fun, especially regarding Red Arrow. Where is he even living these days?

Overall

A good episode. It's nice to bolster the female ranks of the team, and while I'm sad to see Zatara go, I'm glad the Dr. Fate helmet is no longer an option. (Of course, now they can just call on Fate himself, but still.)

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

How I Met Your Mother 7.18 - Karma



How I Met Your Mother 7.18 - Karma


Brief Summary

Barney is intent on getting Quinn to date him, even after learning she's a stripper. However, what he doesn't realize is that he's being played. Robin keeps a journal as she stays with Marshall and Lily in Long Island, and finds herself feeling suffocated by their suburban lifestyle. Ted tries to come up with a use for Robin's room.

What I Liked

Robin keeping the journal about the oddities of suburban life was fun. Marshall and Lily really seemed like how they were in "The Sexless Inkeeper" and "Dual Citizenship," as the globbed together married couple. I liked that they admitted they weren't happy at the end, though, because that was pretty pathetic! ("8:45 ... time to turn in!")

Ted's various uses for Robin's room were fun, however, I guess while Robin's "ghost" haunting the room made sense, I didn't quite feel their conversation. (I feel like Ted needs to stop dwelling on Robin so much. He didn't even take her moving out the first time that hard.) Ted smoking meat, making furniture, and making/painting pottery was hilarious, though.

The end where Ted gives the apartment to Marshall and Lily. I had a feeling that they might move back into the apartment as the episode was drawing to a close, but it hadn't occured to me that Ted might give it all to them. That was a sweet gesture, and it brings Marshall and Lily closer to the action again. It also gives Ted a chance to spread his wings and get out of the place where he's been for some 10 years now.

What I Didn't Like

Barney going after Quinn was to be expected, but why was he so gullible about it? Surely he knows how strippers operate by now. Even Ted could see right through it.

Twists and Turns

Marshall and Lily are moving back to the city, into Ted and Marshall's old apartment, no less!

Observations

Interestingly, in the first season episode The Duel, Marshall and Ted fight over who gets to keep the apartment with Marshall and Lily get married. Marshall says he would use the extra room for a possible baby. Funny that here six years later, they're going to be doing just that! And since they're not taking their old room back (but rather using it as the baby's room) it should have a different feel to it for them than when it was their apartment in their 20s. I'm interested to see how they decorate it. I'm also curious if the swords were on the wall in that episode, or if they've been taken down for a while. I need to double-check.

Robin and Ted are both without an apartment now. I'd like to see Ted crash with Barney for a bit while he looks for a new place. Robin I'd like to see crash at Patrice's, haha.

I'm not really piqued by Quinn's story anymore. She doesn't seem to be the same stripper from S3, and she's obviously not very nice and was just using Barney. (Probably still is, even though she seems friendly and genuine in the end.) Does anyone seriously think this is the woman Barney is going to marry? Didn't think so.

Overall

Not a bad episode. Definitely gets things moving in a new direction. I'm excited to see Marshall and Lily back in the city and in the old apartment. I'm excited to see where Ted and Robin end up living.

But I can't help but feel like this whole season has just been a lot of flip-flopping and back-and-forth: Barney loves Nora, Robin pines for Barney, Robin dates Kevin, Marshall and Lily move to the suburbs, Barney breaks up with Nora, Robin rejects Barney, Robin gets serious with Kevin, Robin breaks up with Kevin, Ted loves Robin again, Robin rejects Ted again, Marshall and Lily move back to the city, Barney loves Quinn ...


And not much emphasis on Ted. So here's hoping Ted's story gets a jumpstart, and we can get through Barney's new love interest relatively painlessly.

Monday, February 20, 2012

How I Met Your Mother 7.17 - No Pressure



How I Met Your Mother 7.17 - No Pressure

Brief Summary

After Ted tells Robin he loves her, she leaves for a business trip to Russia, and Ted is left to discuss the possibility of their getting back together with the rest of the gang. Meanwhile, Barney becomes convinced Marshall and Lily have a sex tape, after finding a box of theirs labeled "Long Term Bets."

What I Liked

Wow, this episode was such an improvement over the past few.

The "Long Term Bets" box that Marshall and Lily had, and the subsequent flashbacks involving it and the bets.

Barney's confessing to Ted what happened back in November, and why he's not going after Robin anymore.

Ted's telling Robin that he can't have the 40-year pact anymore.

Marshall telling Robin she needs to move out.

What I Didn't Like

Robin. I still don't like the way they're portraying her! Why did she go and kiss Ted at the beginning, and almost lead him on? It was good she admitted she didn't love him, but even she was wanting to keep that 40-year deal out there. She's been so all over the place this season with men, first with Barney, then Kevin, and now Ted. She's a mess! And I feel like she really does need to spend some time away from the gang.

Twists and Turns

We actually saw a brief snippet of Ted and the mother on one of their first dates!

Barney tells Ted what happened back in November.

Robin moves out of the apartment.

Observations

I like that Barney isn't going after Robin. She hurt him, and the ball is completely in her court if she wants to get back together. His conversation with Ted was so sincere ... a rarity for Barney. He really has matured a lot.

Marshall still refused to pay up on the bet that Lily made that Robin and Ted won't get back together. Is this just on principle, or is there another piece to that bet that we're not privy to at the moment?

Ted's got an empty room in the apartment now. Wonder if it'll stay empty? I can't think of who would move in with him, though.

Overall

A very solid return to form! It felt like such an old-school episode of HIMYM, with the callbacks to Ted getting let at the altar, and of the blue french horn. Continuity was definitely in full-force tonight. Here's hoping things stay interesting, and that Robin figures herself out soon.

Monday, February 13, 2012

How I Met Your Mother 7.16 - The Drunk Train



How I Met Your Mother 7.16 - The Drunk Train

Brief Summary

Barney and Ted ride the Drunk Train, the last train between Long Island and Manhattan. But although Ted is looking to play the field, Barney has his mind on a new girl he met recently, Quinn. Marshall and Lily go to a bed and breakfast with Kevin and Robin, where Kevin pops the big question.

What I Liked

The "Just Screaming" play that Lily forced Marshall to attend.

Everyone's comments about what Marshall and/or Lily said on their wedding night.

Quinn, surprisingly. She's sassy and attractive, I can understand why Barney is intrigued, and the idea that she's really Karma the stripper is intriguing. (There's mention of a Karma who's "stripping in Vegas" in Season 3's "The Bracket.") If she really is the same person, there's the potential for some backstory that could be interesting. Also, right off the bat, we know she's cunning, and most-likely just using Barney. No false pretenses.

What I Disliked

This episode was otherwise a hot mess. Where do I even begin?

1.) Kevin proposing to Robin. I was like, "No...." when he did. And I was even more baffled when she accepted. Robin has been portrayed always as being against marriage. And not to mention, she hasn't treated Kevin as anything more than the "safe" boyfriend. She's never even said she loves him. Why in the hell would she accept his proposal of marriage?! Especially when she's cheated on him?

2.) I appreciated that Robin was upfront with Kevin and told him flat out she never wanted kids. And it did drive him away. But I'm unhappy that that was the straw that broke the relationship. Not because she realized she was just stringing him along and didn't really have deep feelings. Not because she fessed up to having cheated on him. Because of her no-kids policy. Because of that, we're left to believe she would have married the guy otherwise? That she really, honestly wanted to be married to him??

3.) TED. What the hell, Ted? I know he's coming from a depressed, desperate state. And I'd like to think part of it is just him feeling bad for Robin on top of that. But we don't need to seriously address Ted's feelings for Robin again. Doing it this late in the game is damaging to his character. He needs to move on, or his epic romance with the mother isn't going to feel believable.

4.) Is it just me, or did this episode bounce from scene to scene with almost no transition? It was all over the place. One minute they're at the B&B, the next minute they're back at Robin's apartment talking wedding plans. What day is it? How much time has passed? Who the hell knows.

Twists and Turns

Kevin proposed.

Robin spills the infertility secret to Kevin, Marshall, Lily, and presumably Ted.

Robin accepts the proposal, but after seriously telling Kevin she never wants children, he breaks up with her.

Quinn is actually a stripper from the Lusty Leopard, who has been mentioned before, and seems to know Barney.

Observations

I honestly have no idea what the writers are thinking these days. This shown has thrown rhyme and reason out the window, and seem to be playing for shocks over quality storytelling. At this point, the most promising storyline is Quinn's, even though right from the start we know she's trouble and would never want Barney to seriously end up with her.

Robin as a character has been damaged practically beyond repair. And Ted needs to get a grip, and move on. And Marshall and Lily need some real storylines.

Overall

Terrible, terrible episode. Started funny, and then quickly descended into baffling, out-of-character, incoherent drama.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

How I Met Your Mother 7.15 - The Burning Beekeeper



How I Met Your Mother 7.15 - The Burning Beekeeper


Brief Summary

Told in 5-minute intervals by room, Future Ted describes Marshall and Lily's housewarming party. Simultaneous events include Ted and Robin arguing about her abrassive behavior, Marshall getting upset at having to work late, Marshall's boss getting upset that someone ate all the vegan spring rolls, Lily's father keeping bees in the basement, mice getting all over Lily's special cheese, and Barney debating whether or not to sleep with their crazy neighbor.


What I Liked and Disliked

I appreciated a "structure" episode, as they're called, since we haven't had one in a while. However, although the events did all come together, nothing seemed all that important, or even much of a misunderstanding. The first act was incredibly hard to follow, since it featured lots of snippets of conversations. From the second act onward things made more sense, and although there were some hanging questions at each ad break (who was in the burning beekeeper suit if Mickey was in the dining room?) they were all pretty easy to figure out. (Obviously it was Mr. Cootes, since he was the only one in the kitchen.) Everything was resolved fairly quickly and easily.


One big plus on this one was that the whole gang was together for a change, even if they didn't interact with each other much. I think less story could have been given to Lily's father and the bees and Mr. Cootes and his freakout over the lack of vegan food and making Marshall work late, and more time could have been spent on the conversations between the characters.


Things that were funny were Ted recalling that he was "more of a kicker" when he and Mr. Cootes were about to get into a fight, Marshall urging everyone to eat the Gouda, and Barney proceeding to drink just about everyone's glass of wine as he moved through the rooms.

Twists and Turns

We'll just breakdown the mysteries from each room:

Mr. Cootes was the burning beekeeper: he tried on the suit in the kitchen, went to take Robin's food out of the oven, and caught fire because Mickey had dowsed the suit in kerosene on Barney's suggestion.

Lily was the one that screamed in the kitchen, because mice had gotten on her special cheese.

Barney ate all the spring rolls, and blamed Ted.

Ted and Robin were arguing about her being rude to someone at the store.

Observations

Someone mentioned that when they say the party was "two weeks later," did that mean that this episode actually takes place in the future? I don't think so, personally, but it might explain why Kevin isn't there. He's been around at all the other gang events lately, I don't see why he wouldn't be there, too. He wasn't even mentioned.

Barney is regressing, a lot. One could argue he's just using his womanizing as a shield, but damn, you think he would wise up enough not to sleep with a coo-coo bird like the neighbor.

Seriously, what was up with Robin's pants? They were like cartoonishly blue. She used to dress so nicely!


Overall

Much more entertaining than the previous two episodes, but it still just feels like filler. There wasn't any character developement, there were no big problems, and it wasn't even that funny. I saw someone compare it to an episode of The Big Bang Theory, and that's exactly what it felt like. An entertaining little story, but nothing happened. There was no reason this episode couldn't have been completely skipped over, which is sad.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

How I Met Your Mother 7.14 - 46 Minutes



How I Met Your Mother 7.14 - 46 Minutes


Brief Summary

Marshall and Lily are moving out to their house in Long Island, and the gang is pretty torn up about them leaving. To make themselves feel better by doing something Lily and Marshall would disapprove of, the gang heads out to a strip club. Robin and Kevin play relationship chicken, Ted gets in trouble with some Russian poker players, and Barney thinks Stripper!Lily can replace the original in their group. Meanwhile, Lily's dad makes things uncomfortable for the couple out in Long Island.

What I Liked

Drunk!Ted is priceless. I loved his winning everyone's money at poker and saying stuff like, "I was totally bluffing - I don't even have enough cards!" and singing while stacking up their poker chips into towers.

The fake intro credits, the first time with just Barney, Ted and Robin, and the second time, with Stripper!Lily and New!Marshall instead of Marshall and Lily, were pretty amusing.

I also got a kick out of Robin pointing out the bit of glitter on Kevin's face, and then telling Barney he also had some. We pan to Barney and see his face is covered in glitter.

What I Didn't Like

I've got nothing against Kevin as a character, but Kevin as Robin's boyfriend is boring and annoying at the same time. And since when has Robin been so sensitive to her boyfriends? This is the girl who wanted to throw all Ted's stuff in the storage space when they were going to move in, and here she is tip-toeing around what Kevin may or may not like to do because ... ? She doesn't want to appear to be a killjoy?

Marshall and Lily's storylines by themselves in suburbia are not good. It's just not as funny as I think it's supposed to be, and they feel like they belong on another show. It's like they're both being swallowed up into this boring lifestyle that doesn't really suit them, and they have no storylines outside of it. Yes, they're having a baby. But they don't need to change their personalities because of it. Also, splitting up the gang doesn't work very well.

Twists and Turns

Lily's dad presumably stays longer than 2 weeks? (Or shorter, but I doubt that.)

Robin and Kevin apparently started sleeping together at some point between 7.12 and now.

Observations

Because we are given no reason why Robin would be dating Kevin, it's even harder to buy their relationship on-screen. It's dull, we don't care about it, and I feel like Robin's faking it half the time. Which is not cool character-wise, because then she's just using him. And I'm still waiting to find out what the hell happened to her feelings for Barney?? We shouldn't have to guess why the characters are behaving the way they are.

Although the empty booth at the end of the episode was sad, sort of signaling the end of an era, it makes sense. The gang can't always hang out at the bar every night together, even if that means that the days of certain, crazier adventures are over.

But I think what the show writers are forgetting is that they can do mellow, and still be funny. Season 2 is a perfect example of great stories that were told around 2 stable couples and their single friend. They could easily flip back to this style, only with Marshall/Lily and Barney/Robin as the couples, and with Ted as the single guy instead of Ted/Robin and Barney. Some of the best episodes were about trivial events: trying not to hear the results of the football game, trying to make a flight and tracing the bad luck back to a penny, remiscing about Marshall's old car. These stories are all ones that could still be done, and involve the whole gang. Moving Marshall and Lily out into the suburbs and writing silly strip-club shenanigans for the rest of the gang is not the way to do this.

Overall

While there were some good laughs, this episode was silly and very much a filler. On syndication, this episode will probably be okay, similar to some of the goofier ones from Season 5. But when you're waiting week to week to see some resolution on important storylines, it's an annoying roadblock. Hopefully next week we'll get back to some real stories, and let's also hope it doesn't veer too far into the over-dramatic again.

Monday, January 16, 2012

The Vampire Diaries - 3.11 - Our Town



The Vampire Diaries - 3.11 - Our Town


Brief Summary

It's Caroline's 18th birthday, but she's not too excited about it. As a vampire, she doesn't age, so technically she'll be 17 forever. Elena, Bonnie, and Matt decide to hold a "funeral" party instead of a birthday party, complete with cake, candles, and a brief obituary. Meanwhile, Damon tries to convince Stefan to give into Klaus, but Stefan has other ideas of tipping the war in his favor.

What I Liked

Caroline's birthday was cute. I like when the high school gang hangs out with each other. And maybe it's because I've been persuaded into the thinking that Elena just might end up with Matt when all this is over, but I thought I saw something between them for a split-second tonight. (Most-likely just friendship, but even so, it's nice.)

Klaus chatting with Caroline was kind of nice, actually. Not sure what the bracelet gift is implying, though. Does Klaus suddenly have a thing for her? She does sort of resemble Rebecca, actually. Maybe a replacement for his sister, since Klaus doesn't seem willing to wake her up?

What I Didn't Like

Stefan is frustrating to watch these days. He's off his rocker, and we know it's not because of compulsion or anything. When he shows up unexpectedly behind someone, now my reaction is mixed between, "Oh, it's just Stefan." and "Oh no, it's Stefan!" since you just don't know what he's going to do. Threatening to turn Elena into a vampire was low.

Why does Elena push Damon away and say that it's not right? Certainly she should feel no loyalty to Stefan at this point. I don't know how much time has passed on the show, but it's got to be at least mid-fall/winter. I could see her not wanting to be with Damon on other merits, but Stefan can't continue to be the implied excuse.

Don't like Jeremy leaving, but hopefully he'll return soon.

Twists and Turns

Stefan threatens to turn Elena into a vampire in order to force Klaus' hand.

Klaus compells Tyler to bite Caroline, which he does by accident.

Klaus then saves Caroline's life with his blood.

Observations

Tyler's behavior is still annoyed even if it isn't exactly his fault. He can't control himself when Klaus orders him to do something. It's like permanent compulsion. Maybe vervane would help?

Dr. Fell seems very suspicious, especially because her boyfriend ended up staked at the end of the episode. What's up with that?

Overall

Not a bad episode. I liked the scenes having to do with Caroline's birthday, and the scene toward the end with Matt and Elena. However, I think they need to shake up the cast soon. Klaus isn't threatening anymore. There's no "bad guy" around, unless you count Stefan. I think we need a new villian on the scene or things are going to get a bit stagnant.

Friday, January 6, 2012

It's Sitcom Night 1

It's Sitcom Night

Because I've recently gotten into an older show in addition to the ones I regularly follow, and because I'd like to keep this blog a little more diverse and fresh, I've decided to start mini recapping some instances of what my family calls "Sitcom Night." Everyone goes over to my parent's place and chooses an episode of any sitcom they want, and we watch. There's 5 of us, so it's usually 5 shows.



Little Scarf Girl's Pick: Frasier 5.09 - Perspectives on Christmas

Brief Summary: It's Christmas, but Frasier and his family/friends are not having a good time of it. Martin can't hit the high note in the song for Christmas pageant he's in, a case of miscommuncation leaves Daphne thinking Martin is dying, Niles gets stuck in an elevator and ends up ruining his new suit, and Frasier accidentally lets it slip to Roz's mother that she's pregnant ... before Roz has a chance to tell her! The entire episode is told from four different perspectives as each of Frasier's friends retell their story while enjoying a massage - their Christmas gift from Frasier.

Overall: I picked this episode, so naturally I liked it! I've recently gotten into Frasier, and am really enjoying the stories and characters. It's got subtle, witty humor (although plenty of slapstick thrown in there, too) and everyone plays off each other very well. In this particular episode, I liked the use of the flashbacks, and how certain things were different depending on who was remembering it. (Like how Daphne is completely oblivious to the romantic implications of Niles' comment about her being under the mistletoe, and takes random statements from Frasier and Martin out-of-context to further her belief that Martin is dying.)

Guitar Player Boy's Pick: The Simpsons 4.03 - Homer the Heretic

Brief Summary: Homer doesn't feel like going to church one week, and when he has the best day ever (while his family gets trapped in the freezing church with a broken furnace) he decides he's never going back to church. But when his house catches on fire one week while he's playing hookey, he changes his mind.

Overall: I'm not a big fan of the The Simpsons. I remember it as being sad when I was a kid, catching snippits of episodes my dad would watch on TV, so part of that has carried over into my adulthood. (On the other hand, I love Futurama, which was a staple in the evenings during my early college years.) This episode had a few chuckles, but nothing laugh-out-loud funny. The concept (the mom taking all the kids to church, the dad staying at home) is actually applicable to our household, though, haha.

Mountain Dew Girl's Pick: Modern Family 1.08 - Great Expectations

Brief Summary: Phil has gotten Claire some great and creative anniversary gifts, and all she thought to give him were coupons for free hugs. Determined to give him something great, she gets an 80's singer (from a band she thinks is the singer of "their song," but that Phil doesn't even really like) to come give them a private concert. Meanwhile, Cam and Mitch decide they need a night away from the baby, but their old friend isn't exactly as fun to be with as they remembered, and Jay has all the grandkids over for "Jay's Night," but all Hailey wants to do is go to the party down the block.

Overall: Modern Family has grown on me a bit. The characters are likable, and the stories are mostly clever. I don't think they're quite as funny as my mom and Mountain Dew Girl do, but they always have a few chuckles. I think the 80's singer story went on a little long, but it was amusing.

Chess Enthusiast Dad's Pick: Fawlty Towers 2.04 - The Kipper and The Corpse

Brief Summary: A guest dies in the hotel, and Mr. Fawlty tries to move the body to a safe location until the undertakers come to pick it up. Naturally, this leads to a lot of hard-to-explain situations and angry guests.

Overall: I don't care for this series very much, and I don't think it's just because it's British humor. (Although I'm not a big Monty Python fan, either.) This episode was about the same as the other episode we watched (2.06 - Basil the Rat), with something going awry in the hotel, and the staff rushing to try to cover it up from an inspector or other such person. There were a few laughs here and there, but definitely not something I'd want to watch again.

The Vampire Diaries 3.10 - The New Deal



The Vampire Diaries 3.10 - The New Deal



Brief Summary

Stefan has stolen Klaus' family, and the original is not happy about it. Stefan has Bonnie contact the dead witches to help hide the coffins, while Alaric and Elena worry about Jeremy's safety as he begins hanging out with hybrid Tyler more. Damon and Stefan have a confrontation, in which Damon learns why Stefan betrayed them. When Elena proves unhelpful in finding the coffins, Klaus decides to send a message.

What I Liked

I was glad to see Jeremy and Alaric have more of a role, especially when it comes to them as a family. They've been kind of scattered lately, so it's nice to see them try to acknowledge that they're an "atypical family."

Damon's been very helpful lately, and it's interesting to see that he's almost glad when it seems Stefan has turned completely on them, as it mediates his own guilt about liking Elena. He finds out this isn't the case, though, and tells Elena as much. But then he bites the bullet and goes in for a kiss anyway.

What I Didn't Like

While it is in the best interest for Jeremy to leave town, I don't want him to be gone for too long! He's been a cast member since the beginning, and he was seriously starting to become a bit bad-ass. (Crossbow? Cutting off hybrid heads?) I doubt he'd be thrilled that he was compelled to do it, but earlier in the episode he really did sound like he wanted out.

Klaus is still a bit dull to me. How is it that he can track down everyone except Stefan? Let's wake up some of the original relatives (especially Elijah!) already.

Twists and Turns

Klaus has Jeremy under compulsion, and nearly gets him hit by a car.

Stefan enlists Bonnie's help to hide the coffins.

Alaric and Elena have Damon compell Jeremy to leave town.

Damon kisses Elena.

Observations

Elena should definitely know Damon is into her by now. (I have a feeling she's known for a long time, though.)

The ring that Alaric wears saved him from being hit by a car because it was driven by a supernatural being? Just trying to keep the powers on that thing straight. I also recall him muttering something about Damon's blood saving him, although we never saw a scene where that happened. Is his ring not fully healing him anymore?

Caroline and Matt were both MIA this episode.

Overall

A good episode with a cute ending. Interested to see where this is going!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Castle 4.10 - Cuffed


Castle 4.10 - Cuffed


Brief Summary

Castle and Beckett wake up handcuffed together on a bed in a room, with no idea of how they got there. Together they have to piece together the events that led them there, and figure out who has captured them before it's too late. Meanwhile, the recent of the precinct is trying to figure out where Castle and Beckett have disappeared to.

What I Liked

This was a fun episode. The banter between Castle and Beckette was enjoyable, as was their attempts to escape. Even though I started to get a little creeped out by the Saw-like objects they discovered, nothing too terrible happened. The whole episode was fun, fast-paced, and had a good conclusion.

What I Didn't Like

Nothing much to complain about!

Twists and Turns

The whole episode was a bit twisty, but I think the biggest twist was the tiger in the next room. I didn't see that coming!

Observations

These fun episodes between Castle and Beckett are a nice reminder of why the audience is supposed to want them together. I think it was in this episode where they're making the comments about how Lanie and Espisito are meant to be together, but just can't see it. Castle says, "But it's so obvious!" Yes, we get it. ;)

Overall

A good episode! Episodes like these make me want to keep up with the show.

How I Met Your Mother 7.13 - Tailgate


How I Met Your Mother 7.13 - Tailgate


Brief Summary

Marshall decides to spend some time with his father by tailgating during the Viking's game out in the cemetary near his headstone. While he argues with his brothers, who have also showed up with similar ideas, and deals with the fact that other people at the cemetary are joining in on the event, he tells his father the story of New Year's Eve 2011. Barney and Ted, annoyed that McLaren's had a huge cover charge, start their own bar, Puzzles. Robin has to cover for Sandy Rivers on live TV for the NYE countdown. Lily is sadden by the fact that her dad doesn't seem all that interested in her pregnancy.

What I Liked

The parts that had to do with Marshall's dad and Lily's dad respectively were really sweet and poignant. Marshall remembering tailgating with his dad, and Lily's dad showing up for her at the end with the giant teddy bear to congratulate her were both great moments.

The Puzzles logo looked a bit like the Cheers logo, which I found amusing.

I'm glad Robin will presumably be back on the air again. I hadn't realized it until now, but her working a research job just isn't as fun to watch as her on-air jobs in the previous seasons. Her working with Sandy Rivers should also be fun to watch.

When the crowd at Puzzles got rowdy and started breaking stuff I laughed out loud. Ted getting hit with a dart was great.

What I Didn't Like

First off, Robin's behavior is a little hard to swallow these days. Why is she still with Kevin? He seems very into her, and his supportive comments about her career are nice, but she hardly seems as into him. It's also hard to be very sympathetic to Robin, since a lot of her problems right now are her own fault.

Kevin's "That's my girl!" comment rubbed me the wrong way, and I'm surprised we didn't get a glimpse of Barney's reaction during that scene. Clearly he still cares about Robin, but other than his being excited that she was on TV, we aren't given any indication he's upset or even bothered by Robin's behavior in the past few episodes. HIMYM does unfortunately have a history of dropping feelings for several episodes at a time, but a little glance from Barney would have gone a long way. (Although, it's clear he still cares for her. It's Robin's feelings for him that have disappeared with little explanation, especially given that they were such a big plot point in the beginning of the season.)

I thought the episode overall was a little choppy. I would almost forget Marshall was telling the story from the future (after the events had occurred), and his subplot about wanting their child to believe in supernatural creatures was sort of silly. Also, why weren't they spending the New Year's with the rest of the gang? Surely they could unpack the baby room another time. That subplot took up almost as much time as Puzzles, which was actually brushed over rather quickly in favor of Robin and Marshall's storylines.

Twists and Turns

Robin is going to be back on TV again.

Lily's dad showed up, even though Lily thought he was disinterested in her pregnancy.

Observations

I would love to see Lily's relationship with her dad be explored some more. He's a fun character, and although he was a terrible dad to her, it would be nice to see them try to mend that relationship a bit. It would also give Lily a more concrete plot for a while. Other than baby stuff and stuff related to Marshall's work, Lily has been plotless for quite a while.

I've already said my bit about Robin and Kevin, but seriously, this relationship needs to end soon. And we need some real explanations for why Robin suddenly isn't interested in Barney anymore.

Overall

Not a bad episode (I liked it better than The Rebound Girl) but it wasn't great. There were some genuinely funny moments, and some pretty touching ones, too, but it was a little choppily put together, and after all the drama from the first half of the season, it's a little weird that the episode essentially shelves all the tension and feelings that should be there.